On the Benefits of
Representing Multiple Solutions


By: Greg Wade

Map Data: Penang Nyona, Malaysia
Google Earth, Google Maxar Technologies

Here’s an interesting theoretical situation. Imagine that you represent a major Asian conglomerate. You control several budgets that need to be spent by the end of the year on a variety of partnerships with organizations that augment your core offerings. Imagine that you are extremely busy and only have time to entertain one vendor pitch. There are two salespeople to choose from, so you’ll have to turn one of them away. Not an uncommon situation. The salespeople are equivalent except that one of them represents a single reputable firm, while the other represents several reputable firms simultaneously. With whom do you schedule your meeting?

The second salesperson gets more meetings across the board. This is certainly because there are more possibilities to explore for a potential fit with your variety of budgetary needs. But there are other reasons, too. The candidate who represents multiple reputable firms embodies the sum of their reputations. It is one thing to have earned the right to represent a firm with a solid track record in the Western world, but it is another thing altogether to have earned the right to represent multiple. Further, it is implicitly understood that this salesperson will explore multiple angles rather than press a single one, engendering a sense of shared purpose that lends to credibility and reduces the risk of poor budget allocation. 

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